P.K. Subban’s transition from hockey player to sports analyst is proving to be difficult.
The former New Jersey Devil is part of ESPN’s NHL crew, and while speaking on the Florida Panthers Game 1 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs, he made a disrespectful joke.
His ESPN co-host John Buccigross was referencing the Leafs’ lackluster play and suggested that the team perhaps needs to “pack a lunch.”
Subban quickly retorted that so much more effort would be needed in Game 2, saying, “Listen, maybe they need to pack a Lizzo-sized lunch because they weren’t prepared, in my opinion.”
He was referencing Lizzo, the plus-sized singer who always champions body inclusivity, despite haters always making fatphobic comments.
“I don’t ever want to censor myself… I’m not going to quiet myself. I’m not going to shrink myself because somebody thinks that I’m not sexy to them,” she said on Instagram Live in 2019 to silence critics. “It doesn’t really matter what goes on on the internet, nothing really breaks my joy. I’m a really solid, grounded person, and I know that I’m shocking because you’ve never seen — in a long time — a body like mine doing whatever it wants to do and dressing the way that it dresses and moving the way that it moves.”
The comment was made late Tuesday night, and neither Subban nor his employer has issued a statement for his off-color moment.
This isn’t the first time Subban’s been in hot water for on-air comments, with the most recent coming a few months ago during the NHL season when some teams chose not to participate in Pride nights. Subban agreed with the franchises’ stance because players shouldn’t be forced to support social justice issues.
“We cannot push everyone to be an activist, we need to be very careful,” Subban said of supporting the LGBTQ+ community. “I feel people pick and choose what they want to talk about and I don’t like it when we put the onus on athletes to be activists.”
See Twitter’s mixed reactions to Subban’s Lizzo joke below.
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